I might be interested in a consent decree, what should I do?


At this point you probably feel pretty sure that you have experienced employment discrimination and you are wondering where you should go from here. The following is a list of initial steps and helpful tips:


You may want to get more familiar with your state and federal law. You can do this research on the W.A.G.E. website: ../files/. Based on this information you can also find out if you must contact the EEOC or a local administrative agency.


You may also want to talk to other women at your workplace possibly facing similar discrimination, work as a unified group, and even start a W.A.G.E. club. The WAGE website can provide you with tips for organizing this club: ../files/howtostart.php. Your employer will likely be more persuaded to listen to a group.


You should begin to record and collect evidence of current and past events and actions that seem discriminatory, also called ‘adjudicative facts.’ They are convincing proof of your employer’s discrimination. Ultimately they may not be used to find that your employer in-fact discriminated against you, but they will be considered when deciding what remedies will be fair and effective and can persuade your employer to agree to a consent decree.


You should realize that there are many ways to approach a consent decree. The following are common approaches:
1)you can file a claim with the EEOC or your local civil rights commission and their lawyers may decide to work on your behalf to negotiate a consent decree;
2)you can hire your own lawyer who can then negotiate a consent decree;
3)you can approach your employer with the idea before going to the court or hiring a lawyer; or
4)you and your employer can enter into a consent decree during the course of litigation (as your case is being tried in court).


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